Can you guess what the majority of successful businesses place as their top priority?
If you guessed “customer experience”, you guessed right. Forrester reports that 76% of executives say improving CX is a high or critical priority.
Customers, without a doubt, expect more from the brands they purchase than ever before, but there is a growing experience gap as businesses fail to deliver. When nearly 3,000 people were asked about their biggest customer experience success or failure in the last decade, 76% recalled a failure.
That’s why it’s crucial for businesses to appoint an executive to oversee customer experience and deal with challenges. The Chief Experience Officer (CXO), one of the most recent additions to the C-suite, is tasked with leveraging best practices in design and customer experience.
In this article we’ll go through:
- What is a chief experience officer (CXO)?
- What does a chief experience officer do?
- Why should you hire a chief experience officer (CXO)?
- What should you look for in a customer experience officer?
- What Is the average chief experience officer salary?
In order to determine whether your company requires a CXO, you must first understand what a CXO does.
CXO meaning: A chief experience officer (CXO) is an executive who is in charge of a company’s overall customer experience and interactions. They are responsible for customer experience (CX) strategies that aim to provide positive customer experiences to encourage customer loyalty and retention.
Here are some general responsibilities that CXOs are expected to handle:
- Mapping customer journeys and analyzing customer data to improve strategy.
- Businesses interact with their customers through a variety of channels(social media platforms, live chat, customer feedback forums, etc); the CXO integrates these channels to ensure a continuous flow of useful information between the enterprise and its customer base.
- Employee experience (EX) can also be part of the CXO role to ensure that employees embody the brand’s customer promise and deliver on brand expectations.
- Collaboration across departments to create a unified experience across all touchpoints.
- Monitoring the current experience delivered to customers by overseeing the customer success and customer service teams.
- Measuring and monitoring the impact of projects on business metrics and key performance indicators.
Even though companies have recognized the importance of customer experience as a key differentiator, it is not always the driving force behind most business strategies. If this sounds familiar, you need someone who can create and implement customer-centric strategies.
To dive deeper into the importance of the role, let’s take a look at six key things a qualified CXO can do for your organization:
1. Fill in the blanks in your customer journey
Is your customer’s journey consistent?
Most likely, you would say “yes.” And yet, 45% of customers can’t remember having a recent successful customer experience.
Today’s consumers expect seamless and personalized user experiences when they interact with brands. This is why you need an expert to optimize the customer journey.
According to a McKinsey & Company survey, effective customer journeys increase a customer’s overall satisfaction by 20%. This has the potential to increase your revenue by up to 15% while decreasing your customer service costs by 20%.
The key to optimizing your customer’s journey is leveraging customer data. CXOs can use data analysis tools to look at metrics and data behind each customer touchpoint to identify gaps and problems in the customer journey.
Following that, they can devise and implement solutions to ensure consistency in the customer journey.
2. Increased customer satisfaction
Once customers experience what they consider a major customer experience failure, 64% of customers will stop recommending the organization and start looking for an alternative brand.
Moreover, a bad customer experience may trigger negative word-of-mouth online.
To ensure a great and consistent customer experience, a chief experience officer will not only look at individual touchpoints but will also understand your sales funnel and focus on the entire customer journey.
And when a dedicated executive focuses on the entire customer journey, it is easier to see the “big picture” and provide unified and consistent customer service.
3. Better customer service
Customer service is at the core of a great customer experience, which is why you need an expert to assess all aspects of your customer interactions.
Studies show us that most customer experience successes are dependent on customer service: 35% of consumers surveyed rated their experience success because customer service was pleasant or helpful (35%); customer service was very knowledgeable or well-trained (27%) and customer service was empowered to help properly (24%).
Only great product quality ranked equally high as these satisfying customer service experiences at 25%.
A CXO can improve customer service by impacting the following factors:
- According to a PwC survey, 46 percent of consumers would stop doing business with a company due to a lack of knowledge on the part of an employee. A CXO can oversee the training and management of your customer service team.
- With a customer experience officer at the helm, your customer service culture can encourage providing a human touch rather than focusing solely on speed and efficiency. According to a recent PwC study, two-thirds of consumers prefer more human interaction in customer service.
4. Improved customer retention
Most brands devote a significant amount of time and effort to generating new leads and attracting new customers. Studies show that focusing resources on retaining existing customers is more valuable. After all, it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one.
Improving customer retention is a key responsibility for CXOs. With a chief customer experience officer monitoring the customer experience, tracking feedback, and customer trends, they can align the insights with the brand’s message or services to help attract and retain customers.
And as per SuperOffice, customer retention is the most significant revenue driver:
5. Increases brand loyalty
60 percent of consumers are happy to take their business elsewhere if they don’t receive good customer service.
The customer journey does not end with a purchase; rather, it continues throughout a customer’s lifetime, encouraging them to make additional purchases and spread the word about your product or service. According to a 2018 report conducted by PwC, three-quarters of global respondents say that a positive experience is among the key drivers that influence their brand loyalties.
This is why finding ways to increase customer loyalty is an important objective for chief executive officers. To ensure that customers stay with your brand, you need an expert to assess their needs, expectations, preferences, and perceptions of their experiences.
6. Improve product development
When you focus solely on the product and its launch, you risk missing out on the right product-market fit. This means you may fail to meet your customer’s expectations. Your product may be the best in its category, but it will be useless if the customer does not want it in the first place.
A survey found that 76% of respondents recalled a service failure, but only 55% could remember a positive experience.
You can bridge the gap between customer expectations, business strategy, and product roadmap with the help of an expert CXO.
\They also keep an eye on your customers’ changing needs and evolve products accordingly in order to remain relevant. Maintaining this approach ensures your brand’s long-term viability.
CXOs are in charge of many aspects of the customer experience, including mapping customer journeys and implementing a marketing strategy that continuously nurtures customers while generating sales and word-of-mouth buzz. This means that the person who fills this position must have a diverse set of skills:
- Adaptability: Customer experience is a fast-changing industry. 45% of retail companies plan to use AI within three years to enhance Customer Experience, as pointed out by this study by consulting firm BRP. CXOs must quickly pivot to adapt to emerging technologies, embrace new strategies in order to meet customer demands.
- Effective Communication: At all levels of the customer experience, communication skills are required. CXOs must be able to effectively communicate with various stakeholders, understand their issues, and assist in resolving them.
- Reduce Complexity: CxOs should be able to delegate and prioritize key initiatives, as well as break down complex problems into manageable pieces.
- Empathy: CXO-level candidates may have the best technical skills in the world. However, if they are unable to put themselves in the shoes of your customers (or employees), they will be unable to recognize their needs or design insightful experiences. Empathy can play an important role in retaining loyal customers and driving positive experiences.
- Experience: It can be difficult to find someone with the specific experience you require. However, candidates with experience in customer service, marketing, product management may be best suited for CXO roles.
- Data-Driven: CXOs should understand how to quantify key metrics, and make decisions from a data perspective. They must be able to translate CX insights into strategic action and determine which metrics impact customer interactions.
As a new position, finding candidates with specific CXO experience will be difficult. However, the best candidate should bring a mix of functional and business skills to the table.
CXO salary ranges, like any other C suite role, can vary widely depending on a variety of important factors, especially depending on your industry.
According to Glassdoor, CXO salaries range from $66k-$309k per year ($143k/yr on average):
Salary.com estimates the average Chief Experience Officer salary is $204,186/yr, with the salary range typically falling between $177k and $281k per year.
The average from different websites shows that most CXOs earn around $200,000 per year.
A CXO is a new and evolving position, but more and more businesses are recognizing the value of hiring one. With a CXO, your company can integrate the entire customer experience under the supervision of an experienced executive, prioritizing customer-centric decisions and facilitating cross-functional collaboration.
If you want to improve customer engagement, loyalty, and retention through enhanced customer experiences, hiring a customer experience officer can be a critical investment in your brand’s success.